Suezmax Market Update: Weathering The Storm



It was more of the same this week in the AG VLCC sector, as rates continued sluggish ahead of the release of the remainder of May stem confirmations. TD3 hovered around the ws60 level with little change. The Atlantic Basin showed a little more volatility, with the USWC proving very active and USG exports showing increased inquiry. Eastbound rates from the USG dipped to $8.5M, before rebounding back to $8.65M by week’s end.


It was an overall lacklustre week for the Suezmax markets. A string of consecutive days with lighter enquiry and weaker demand resulted in tonnage building and freight rates falling. TD20 started at 130kt x ws125 levels only to slip down ws20 pts to ws105 by Friday. USG transatlantic voyages suffered a similar fate as 145kt x ws110 slid down to ws87.5 and Guyana>UKCM softening to 130kt x ws100. Excessive availability and a weaker Aframax market could only continue to provide increased downward pressure in the short term. That being said, some late afternoon reports of “under the radar” USG exports could perhaps carve a quicker path to stability come next week. Time will tell.


The Aframax market started softening this week as USG>UKC rates dropped from ws220 to ws177.5 after activity started winding down and allowed tonnage to start stacking up throughout the region. Charterers will likely swing for the fences on next done rates as they look to take a sizable chunk out of the market. For now it’s a tough call to make as there just were not enough fixtures to base any movement off of. Next week should be a solid indicator as to where the market is headed.


Much like last week, this week’s markets intrusively went downward in much of the Americas. The week started off with a handful of USG>CBS fixtures around l/s $775K and the end of the week call is a little more than $100K off of that. A few TC14’s were done mid-week around ws157.5, and that is where you could say the slippery slope down started as the start of the week was fairly high around ws185. TC18 followed suit starting that week off around ws270. Although few cargoes came to the market, the route followed TC14’s trend and the week would close around ws235. The USG>FEAST trade took as step down tol/s $2.5M. TC2 spent most of the week just like the Americas and had little by little losses, but then started to bounce back at the end of the week. TC2 started the week at ws185, then hit a mid-week low of ws172.5 before bouncing back up to ws180ish. Even with some boats being taken off the list privately, there was still more supply than demand, hence the rates trending down all week and will likely remain at these lower levels next week.

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Source : Capitallink